A little boy’s last wish will help make the pediatric unit at Royal University Hospital (RUH) a little more comfortable for kids.
Mason Gariepy died last year at age 7 from acute myeloid leukemia. But before he passed away, he asked the Make-A-Wish foundation to give RUH a special gift on his behalf: a humanoid robot that can talk with —and even sing to — kids who are undergoing treatment.
His mother Gale explained the idea came after Mason saw a similar robot at a hospital in Calgary.
“We were actually walking to clinic one day and we saw this robot interact with another child, and he’s like: ‘whoa.’ I told him what it was and he says: ‘Mom, my hospital needs that.'”
Over the course of his treatments at RUH, Mason was befriended by the team at C95. Gale spoke Wednesday with hosts Rob and Shauna.
She said Mason had told her he wanted to be a nurse when he grew up, as such, the robot will be named Nurse Mason in his honour.
“I just can’t wait for this thing to work. He needs to get to work. There’s so many kids that could be using him and it’s just going to be a legacy in Mason, that’s my goal,” she said.
After stopping by C95, Nurse Mason was unveiled in an event at RUH.
The robot is designed to interact with children to help calm them/cheer them up while in hospital. Mason first saw one when he was in Calgary and thought “my hospital needs one!” (He watched construction of the Sask. Children’s Hospital from his window) #yxe pic.twitter.com/5JcLMZhtT8
— Chris Vandenbreekel (@Vandecision) September 5, 2018
-With files from 650 CKOM’s Chris Vandenbreekel